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Business and social site LinkedIn (news, site) has created a developer platform that lets your own site show professional and company information from LinkedIn's and offer wider interactions.

Linking Arms Across the Web

Last fall, LinkedIn ran a small trial where it opened up parts of its site to others through a JavaScript or REST APIs for improved web engagement. Now the program is being rolled out wholesale, so sites can incorporate LinkedIn content relevant to their business.

The update brings a range of plugins that allows coders to add handy features that will make it easier for users to feed content back and forth. For example, one plugin will help users share content they find on their LinkedIn wall with the click of a Share or Recommend button. Users can also sign in to your site using their LinkedIn pass. Other plugins can also display various levels of a user's profile.

Social with a Smile

While it's nothing that you can't do on Facebook, it will help those who use LinkedIn as a front for their business, skills or colleagues to boost their activity and get themselves known on more sites and places, with the appropriate level of professionalism that LinkedIn offers over more informal social media sites.

All the components are free to gain access to and use on your site. Each component can be created in the LinkedIn developer area and the code dropped into your own pages. It uses OAuth for authorization and there are forums and discussions if you're having trouble getting a component to work.

With LinkedIn acting as a hub for all kinds of workers, these features will help add a further sense of fraternity and community across other sites and could help businesses find new workers, solve problems or advertise services.